Dr. Seno’s Dream

Dr. Elvira Seno Had a Vision for her Beloved “Slippery Slopes” Tree Farm

elvira1When she retired from her medical practice in 1974. Dr. Elvira Seno bought this farm near Slade Corners where she had grown up as a child. In fact, she had visited this farm many times and played with the children who lived here.

She restored the old fields and pastures to support trees and wildlife, as well as crops. She planted 49,000 maple, ash, walnut and oak tress on the pastured hillsides, renovated the crop land, built a pond, and purchased a 26 acre tamarack marsh, just to protect it. She dearly loved this farm and wanted it to always remain as it was. Her wish was to find someone to carry our her wishes and be used to show others, especially children, the value and importance of the forests and the natural world. In 1994 she turned to the Wisconsin Woodland Owners Association (WWOA) who created a non-profit educational foundation to accept the gift of the land.

 Dedication of property

Dr. Seno (L) with Rachel Jordan at dedication of the property, June 17, 1995

Since 1996, the WWOA Foundation¬†has managed the property according to Dr. Seno’s wishes. The Wisconsin DNR holds a perpetual easement on the property that ensures it will always be cared for as she intended. Staff, volunteers and friends have renovated the barn as an educational center; planted trees, controlled exotic species, improved young forests and wildlife habitat. Before her death, in 1996, Dr. Seno was pleased to see the first groups coming to visit her farm.

Now school classes and groups come to enjoy, learn, and appreciate this wonderful gift. And Dr. Seno’s beloved farm stands as a tribute to her deep conservation ethic.

history3It almost seems that I was born with the “land ethic” already instilled in me. But that was probably because, among the things repeated in grown up talk, was my grandfather’s repeated remark to remember “we don’t own the land – it is only ours to take care of for a while.”
– Dr. Elvira Seno